Schools tune in to radio benefits to meet lockdown protocols

Schools and colleges are increasingly employing two-way radios to underpin their lockdown protocols and ensure the general safety of students and staff.

Whilst required by the Department for Schools and Education to have lockdowns plans, the teaching union the NASUWT has called for all schools to introduce protocols.

The Home Office, National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO) and other bodies also now offer guidance on introducing ‘dynamic lockdown’ procedures. These are designed to enable staff to respond swiftly and effectively to fast-moving incidents.

“Lockdowns, whilst still relatively infrequent, are nonetheless now a fact of academic life,” commented Andrew Massey, Radio Team Sales Manager at business communications specialist Avoira.

“Safeguarding has always been the key priority of schools administrators, but wider security issues and concerns about things like knife crime have increased that focus.”

He pointed out that last month a number of UK schools were out into full or partial lockdown for a variety of reasons. These included a disturbance involving a student, threatening calls, shots being fired on a street, a naked man walking nearby and knives going missing from a classroom.

Massey says communication is vital in successfully implementing a lockdown protocol. “Two-way radio is particularly well suited to lockdown scenarios as well as supporting students and staff welfare on a day-to-day basis. Dedicated channels allow communication with specific groups, such as first-aid trained staff, as well as all users. This makes co-ordinating a response – the right and measured response – under pressure that much easier and effective.”

Increasing demand for two-way radio solutions is leading Avoira to exhibit for the first time at this month’s Schools & Academies Show in Birmingham.

The company will be demonstrating Motorola’s latest generation Mototrbo DP2000 and DP4000 digital portable two-way radios alongside complementary technologies.

These will include wi-fi enabled ‘panic buttons’. These enable transmission of different pre-programmed alerts from the classroom to colleagues’ radios, mobile telephones and computers.

Messaging platforms integrated into fire and building management systems will also be demonstrated.

Completing the line-up will be ultra-compact body worn video cameras which are already specified by the emergency services, bailiffs, retailers, local authorities transport and security professionals.

Avoira will be exhibiting on stand J15 at the Schools and Academies Show at the NEC on November 13th and 14th. Entry is free, subject to registration. To register, please fill out your details on this page.